Sunday, September 25, 2005

Yep, I was wrong...

Less than an hour after my last post, at almost exactly 4:55 p.m. CDT, the power went out. The wind was gusting, but I didn't think it was any worse than we had seen earlier in the day. We were without power for between 19 and 22 hours. I'm not sure how long, as the lights came back on while we were out.

Around 10:30 a.m. the sun poked out, and the apartment started to warm up. Since the air conditioning was out with everything else running on electricity, we went out for lunch. While we were gone we saw a fair bit of damage. Oh, I know that Monroe wasn't hit bad at all and that what we saw was a drop in the bucket compared to the damage in Sulphur, LA and Beaumont, TX. What we saw was surprising since the winds "only" got up to tropical storm strength.

Here are some pictures of things we saw while we were out.

Shredded shedThis picture is from a house at the end of our street. The debris is an aluminum shed, now wrapped around a chain link fence. We don't know if the shed was attached to the cement foundation nearby or not, but it's all sort of moot now.

Uprooted tree near our houseThis uprooted tree is about a quarter of a mile from our house. We saw a lot of small branches and bits of trees down in our area, but this was the first uprooted tree.

Downed transformer and power linesDown another nearby street we saw what probably caused our power to be out. A tree took out a power line, which in turn pulled the transformer from the power pole.

Downed transformerHere's the transformer, lying on the ground. Downed power lines and flying debris are the reasons they tell you not to go out on the street during a storm.

Tree that took out the transformerThis is what's left of the tree that took out the trans- former. No idea who cut up the tree and stacked it. It could have been Entergy, but we only saw one of their trucks the whole time we were out. Apparently a lot of their crews are down in the New Orleans area, trying to restore power after Katrina.

Pine straw on the roadAlong with tree limbs and bits of trees, there's a lot of pine straw on the ground. This picture, taken near the university, is typical of the streets in our part of the city.

Broken tree near ULMThis street runs in front of the University of Louisiana at Monroe colliseum (currently being used as a special needs shelter for Katrina evacuees). This tree split, taking a light pole with it.

Downed power lines in the Garden DistrictThis is a downed power line in Monroe's Garden District. We saw half a dozen downed power lines while we were out.

Uprooted tree in the Garden DistrictThis is the tree that took out the power line in the previous shot. It blocked half the street. Fortunately, it looks like it didn't hit anything. The vehicles in the picture were parked in front of it.

So, all things considered, we are probably lucky we were without power for less than a day.

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